Few hours after Kejriwal's appeal, AAP gets Rs. 18L donation
After Arvind Kejriwal appealed for donations "to help keep the idea of a clean alternate politics alive," the Aam Aadmi party received Rs. 18L donation within some hours. Kejriwal based his appeal on the Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) report which stated that BJP and Congress owned assets worth Rs. 894cr and Rs. 759cr for 2015-16, respectively. What was Kejriwal's appeal? Read on!
Based on the assets and liabilities declared by the national parties, the report collated data. BJP's declared assets increased from Rs. 123cr in 2004-05 to Rs. 894cr in 2015-16 and during this period, Congress' assets increased from Rs. 166cr to Rs. 759cr. Further, at Rs. 647cr, 77% of parties' total income, BJP and Congress declared high unknown sources of income for 2015-16.
After the report was released, Kejriwal sent an email to donors quoting statistics from it. He said as 80% of BJP and Congress funding comes from unknown sources, "it creates a government with vested interests, and its loyalty is always leaning towards their funding agencies" instead of common people's welfare. He said this was the reason why majority of people don't enjoy even basic requirements.
Kejriwal appealed to donors that despite "4 MPs, 86 MLAs and 52 councillors," AAP was unable to meet its political and organizational expenses. This appeal with the hashtag #CleanPoliticsThisDiwali started trending on social media. It also cited AAP's performance in Delhi due to its commitment to good governance without compromising on "integrity." It mentioned an "outreach team" for communication with donors.
Kejriwal's appeal struck a chord leading to donations of about Rs. 15L within a day from about 1830 people. Subsequently, until 2pm today, the party received about Rs. 4L from 641 donors. Donations ranged from Rs. 10 to Rs. 1L. Compared to this, during October 1-16, AAP received about Rs. 13L from 835 donors. Normally, the party receives regular contributions from about 400 donors.
Kejriwal linked this appeal to AAP's main goal of eradicating corruption by saying that political funding was the biggest source of corruption and "innovation" is required there. This might have resonated with donors and will surely boost AAP's morale ahead of the polls in Gujarat, Rajasthan and UP's local polls. It will be a first-time entrant in all the three states.